The USDA’S Food Safety and Inspection Service Friday amended its Officials’ Calendar of Meetings for July 2017, showing Kenneth Petersen of the OSI Group as the last party outside the federal government to meet with Al Almanza before he retired.
The Almanza-Petersen meeting was on July 19. Petersen is senior vice president of Quality Assurance, Food Safety and Regulatory Affairs at OSI. Their get together was to discuss food safety collaboration.
Almanza’s last meeting with a foreign delegation was on July 5 when a group headed by Paraguay’s Minister of Agriculture met with the FSIS administrator and his trade and marketing staff.
Al Almanza retired from the federal government on July 31. He is now in charge of global food safety for the Brazilian meat company JBS, SA.
A meeting on July 20 with Barbara Negron, president of the North American Natural Casing Association, and her associate Eric Svendsen was with Carmen Rottenberg, the deputy administrator, and Rachel Edelstein, the deputy assistant at the FSIS Office of Policy and Program Development.
With Almanza’s exit, Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue appointed Rottenberg as acting deputy undersecretary for food safety and Paul Kiecker as acting FSIS administrator.
The amended calendar for July shows Rottenberg heading up agency meetings in Almanza’s place. On July 13 and 18, she headed up technical meetings with Brazilian agricultural officials over the South American country’s equivalency with U.S. inspection standards.
She also did a “meet and greet” with Betsy Booren from Tyson Foods on July 18. And a day later on July 19, she joined Almanza in separate monthly meetings with consumer and industry representatives.
Rottenberg also headed up FSIS meetings with a delegation from the Humane Society Legislative Fund on July 20, and Merieux NutriSciences on July 27.
Editor’s Note: This story has been changed from an earlier version to include information from an amended calendar released Friday by FSIS after it was discovered the agency had posted an incomplete calendar.
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